Inquiry Based Learning

Learning to ask questions is the foundation

All Honors College students begin undertaking self-directed research starting their first semester at Mason. The Principles of Research and Inquiry course (HNRS 110) - a first semester requirement - prepares our students to conduct research at the college level and to pursue their research throughout their time at Mason. Each student pursues their own topic, develops their own research question, studies the published scholarships related to their question, then proposes a research method that would enable them to answer the question. These students then have the opportunity to present their research at a research exhibtion hosted by the Honors College.

Students who had a meaningful experience in HNRS 110 go on to become Peer Mentors. Peer Mentors provide one-on-one support using inquiry-based mentoring to help students find different answers to their questions. Not only do they serve as a useful academic resource for those who need it, but they also assist with the transition. 

44% of all Honors College students conduct research with a faculty mentor, while they are at Mason and 38% present their research at an academic conference. Our whole curriculum develops these skills, enabling our students to undertake cutting edge research at Mason and to work on the grand challenges of our time once they graduate.